This helps explain McConaughey's presence in Fool's Gold. The adventure-comedy is as pretty as it is dumb, but seeing as how it's set in the Caribbean, it does allow McConaughey ample opportunity to flex his pecs and sun his shoulders. Too bad for us it offers little else.
Only fools will part with gold, silver, or even copper pennies for a ticket to this disaster, which casts McConaughey as Finn, a one-track-minded treasure seeker whose marriage to Tess (Kate Hudson) ended up on the rocks because he couldn't stop diving for doubloons. Before they divorced, the two came close to finding a fortune in Spanish treasure that reportedly sunk off the coast of the Florida Keys. Now, with help from an eccentric billionaire (Donald Sutherland) and his dim-wit daughter (Alexis Dziena), they're giving the hunt -- and their relationship -- one last shot.
Director Andy Tennant is a competent filmmaker (Hitch, Ever After) who has made a bad film. Gold has no sense of adventure, and no thrills worth seeking. Scenes drag on too long and lead nowhere. Tennant applies a leaden touch to what needed to be a light caper. Stock characters are broadly drawn, from the murderous rap star (Kevin Hart) to whom Finn owes money to the rival treasure seeker (Ray Winstone) racing the couple to the gold. Sutherland plays his character as if he is hiding some big secret (he isn't). Dziena acts with her body. Hudson and McConaughey coast on what little chemistry they have, something which has long since been proven in other movies like How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days.
Like a good treasure map, the Gold screenplay scatters clues that suggest the film's trove of idiocy. Early in the picture, Tess's attorney chastises her for entering into a marriage with slacker, scuba-diving treasure hunter Finn. "You married a guy for the sex, then expected him to be smart," the lawyer lectures. Level the same accusation at any audience member who buys a ticket to this charade because of the sexy poster, then expects the story and dialogue to be intelligent.
The script, credited to Tennant, John Claflin, and Daniel Zelman, pays no attention to logic and frequently disrupts continuity. Here's my favorite gaffe: Tess lectures rail-thin Gemma (Dziena) not to play dumb to get people to pay attention to her. In the very next scene, Tess begs Gemma to prance on the deck of her father's yacht in a non-existent bikini so men on a neighboring boat will be distracted. Welcome to the land of fools, where mistakes like that are worth their weight in gold.
Hey, I found a script in a bottle.
Run time: 112 mins
In Theaters: Friday 8th February 2008
Box Office USA: $70.2M
Distributed by: Warner Bros. Pictures
Production compaines: Warner Bros. Pictures, De Line Pictures
Contactmusic.com: 1 / 5
Rotten Tomatoes: 11%
Fresh: 16 Rotten: 128
IMDB: 5.6 / 10
Director: Andy Tennant
Producer: Wink Mordaunt, James R. Dyer, Jon Klane
Starring: Matthew McConaughey as Ben 'Finn' Finnegan, Kate Hudson as Tess Finnegan, Donald Sutherland as Nigel Honeycutt, Alexis Dziena as Gemma Honeycutt, Ray Winstone as Moe Fitch, Ewen Bremner as Alfonz, Brian Hooks as Curtis, Kevin Hart as Bigg Bunny, Malcolm-Jamal Warner as Cordell, David Roberts as Cyrus, Michael Mulheren as Eddie, Adam LeFevre as Gary, Rohan Nichol as Stefan, Roger Sciberras as Andras, Elizabeth Connolly as Precious Gem Crew Nurse